The M.D. of Bonnyville is planning to put more money towards its campground in Cold Lake after receiving some federal stimulus money.
The $1.5 million in extra money will go towards pursuing new developments and upgrades for the site’s land and water facilities as well as existing projects, such as the campground’s expansion to include over 80 new campsites.
“It’s a beautiful park and everybody goes there–it’s one of the few moneymakers in recreation that we have going and that’s in high demand,” said Reeve Greg Sawchuk on The Morning After.
Woods Environment and Infrastructure Solutions will handle the grunt work of the expansion, which will see 67 acres of land developed into RV stalls, trails, and playgrounds.
The expansion will be broken up into three phases after it was determined that developing the campground to full capacity would exceed current funds available for the project.
Phase one will see drainage improvements being made, tenting site developments, prep work for future road paving, and waterline installation.
Subsequent phases will see electricity installed throughout the park, complete roadway development for the north and south loop, and a controlled entrance/exit among other improvements.
The project’s current cost estimate is around $5.4 million including GST.
On where council was looking to spend the stimulus money Sawchuk mentioned wanting to address the campground’s boat launch and viewing point, both of which have fallen into a state of disrepair in the last few years.
“Over the years, ice has moved around and caused undulations on the surface, and that’s made it unsafe to use,” said Sawchuk.
“And that’s unfortunate because a lot of folks would use that for their wedding pictures in the past.
“And so the plan is to revamp that boat launch, work on the parking area, and create a bit of a dock system — not something you could think of as a proper marina, but a slip system where you can have some boats tied up, and hopefully that would take a little bit of pressure off the main marina in Cold Lake.”
Councillors also discussed using the money for paving purposes in the campground, debating between paving its roadways or utilizing the pavement for wheelchair accessible ramps.
In regards to the campsite expansions, the M.D. has been in talks with Cold Lake mayor Craig Copeland to work in coordination with the city before the projected got underway to ensure that the new additions wouldn’t impose on any private property.
Copeland and the rest of the city have been in favour of the work being done throughout the campground.
The full project is expected to be complete by summer of 2023.